Bulk student import and enrollments are offered if you're looking to migrate to Thinkific from another platform. Feel free to get in touch with our Solutions team to learn more.
If you're looking to regularly bulk create and enroll students, check out our Import from File and Bulk Enroll and Unenroll articles.
If you're migrating from another platform that you need to create student accounts for and enroll in a course, Thinkific can help. All you need to do is fill out a spreadsheet and we'll take care of the rest. Making sure that the spreadsheet is set up correctly will expedite the process. Use the guidelines below to help you when you're preparing your bulk student import and enrollment spreadsheet.
All requests to import students must be made 5 business days prior to an intended import date. This lets us troubleshoot formatting issues in the spreadsheet. Send your file to: email@example.com
How to Edit the Template File
When you submit an application for a student import, you will receive a reply with a bulk student import and enrollment spreadsheet template file attached.
You will need a spreadsheet editor to access and edit the file (we recommend Microsoft Excel).
This template file includes two separate sheets:
- Students Sheet - This sheet is where you list all of the relevant details for the student account that will be created as a part of this process.
- Enrollments Sheet - This sheet is where you list all the student accounts in the first sheet to be enrolled in published courses or bundles on your course site along with the courses that they will be enrolled in.
Filling Out the Students Sheet
Below, this sheet's column headers are described:
Student_email - Required - The student email to be attached to their account as a username. Students will use this email to log in. Make sure that the email addresses are not hyperlinked as this will cause issues when importing.
Important: A student should only have one entry on the Students sheet. If there are duplicates, the first entry will be overwritten by the next duplicate entry.
First_name - Required - First name of the student.
Last_name - Required - Last name of the student.
Students can change their name settings after they log in. If you don't know the name, add a placeholder for them to change. First and Last Names must be separated.
Password - Optional - You can leave the password field blank to have us auto-generate an Express Sign-in link to your students. You will need to make sure that you include the express sign-in variable in your welcome email for students to receive this link so that they can activate it and log in if you are not intending to send your own welcome email with these details. This would be the most secure password option.
Alternatively, you have the option of setting a generic password like 'password1' for all imported students. Passwords must be at least 6 characters long and are case-sensitive. For security reasons, it's not possible to automatically include the template passwords within a welcome email. You will need to send all imported students their password to log in. Students can change their password after logging into their accounts, or by using the forgot password link on the sign in page of your course site.
Important: If opting to use a number as the password (e.g. 123456) it's imperative that the cell/column formatting be set to 'text', otherwise Excel will interpret it as the number 123456.0. This means that the user will be created with a password of 123456.0 instead of your intended password of 123456. Learn how to format numbers to text on the Office website here.
Group_names - Optional - You have the option to add students to one or more Groups with the bulk import. If you would like to add a student to multiple Groups, separate each Group name with a comma (,) in this field.
Please note that you can only add students to existing Groups on your site so you will need to create all the Groups before doing the import.
Company - Optional - This header should ideally remain blank, however, it is available to import data should you choose. You will not be able to pull data or filter users by company from the admin panel.
Filling Out the Enrollments Sheet
Below, this sheet's column headers are described:
Student_email - Required - The email address associated with a student account already in the Students sheet. If a student account needs to be enrolled in multiple courses, the account needs a line per enrollment, meaning duplicate entries of student account details enrolled in several courses is allowed on this sheet. If you are copying and pasting email addresses into this field, you will need to ensure that they are not hyperlinked, as this will cause issues when importing.
Course_name - Required - Course names must match the course names in Thinkific exactly as they are case sensitive. Courses must be published prior to the import.
Activated_at - Required for full enrollments. - (Format: YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS) - This is used as the student's enrollment date to calculate enrollment duration and Drip Schedules. If the course does not have a drip schedule in place, the student will have access to the course immediately, regardless of what date is set.
You can find a student's Activated_at date by searching their name in your course's Progress Report.
If no Activated_at date is provided, students will be enrolled in a Free Preview version of your course.
If you have a Drip Schedule by Enrollment Date, the Activated_at date will define the start of the Drip Schedule.
Expiry_date - Optional - (Format: YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS) - The date (UTC) the student will lose access to the course. This date is when the enrollment for the course will expire.
Completed_date - Optional - (Format: YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS) - The date (UTC) the student completed the course (100% progress).
This only sets the progress rate and does not expire the enrollment. This means students with a Completed_date set and no Expiry_date set in the sheet will still have access to the course's lessons.
Submitting Your Completed Template
Once you've completed your import sheet, send it via email to our support team and we'll take care of the rest for you! Please be sure to indicate if you would like to:
- Send the site welcome email
- Trigger enrollment events (for example, sync students to your Mailchimp lists)
Frequently Asked Questions
Will imported students get a welcome email?
Students who are imported can receive a Site Welcome Email if you choose. You will need to notify Thinkific support when submitting your student import spreadsheet if you wish this to occur. Your site welcome email can be customized prior to sending to include your user's log-in credentials and the URL to sign in to your new course site. Students who are imported cannot receive course welcome emails. You will be responsible for sending out welcome emails associated with specific courses if imported students are being enrolled in any.
Is it possible to include template passwords within the site welcome email?
No. For security reasons, it is not possible to have the passwords within a template automatically included within a welcome email. In general, we do not recommend emailing passwords and instead simply leaving the password field blank. If the field is blank and you ask us to trigger the Site Welcome Email upon import, students will be prompted to create their own passwords.
If you must send password details to your students, we recommend indicating they are temporary and ask your students to edit them as soon as they login. In this case, you will need to individually send each student a password or manually enter the details in your site welcome email before we run the import if you are using a generic password for all students.
Will imported student's progress in my old courses transfer over?
Progress rates from other platforms cannot be imported with the student. However, the Thinkific student import can set a course completion rate as 0% or 100%. That means if a student has completed a course in your previous platform, that can be reflected in your Thinkific courses.
Where can I get the bulk student import and enrollment template?
You can download the template at the bottom of this article. Download the file and open it in your favorite spreadsheet tool. Microsoft Excel works best.
Will the bulk student import trigger actions I have set up in Zapier?
No, since the bulk student import is a separate feature - these do not connect to our full enrollment trigger in Zapier. For example, if you are looking to add your students you've bulk imported to a mailing list, you'll need to do so manually rather than rely on a zap to do so.
I'm not migrating but have a group of students that I need created and enrolled. Can you do that for me?
Can I import custom fields?
My dates are in a different format, do I have to change them to YYYY-MM-DD?
If you already have your dates entered in a different format, you do not need to change the formatting, but you should be absolutely sure that the column is set to the date data format.
What happens if I fill out the "students" sheet for students with expired enrollment?
The account will still be created for expired users, but there won't be any record of previously enrolled courses associated with their user account.
If you'd like to keep a record of your students' expired courses associated with their users page, you will want to fill out the Enrollments Tab for them with the expired dates included.